APCO Fresh-Aire UV Air Purifier
APCO Fresh-Aire UV Air Purifier Review
Updated 4/2021, original posting 4/2020. The APCO Fresh-Aire UV whole-home air purifier is 1 of 3 in-duct air scrubbers (air purifiers) we recommend to homeowners. I previously reviewed both the Air Scrubber Plus by Aerus & REME HALO, so in this post I’ll focus on APCO. I will however cover the “APCO Fresh-Aire vs. Lennox Pure Air Purifier (all-in-one) question since I compared the other two to it. I’ve included some links to a few of the related articles and reviews as well.
Why Endorse Three Brands That Do Virtually the Same Thing?
For the same reason we install many different brands of air conditioning & heating equipment – we offer options, not ultimatums! As with electronics, appliances, etc., every brand has pros and cons. We try to couple our clients with the brand that best serves their individual needs, wants and budget. That said, we are in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis as I write this article. It’s been hard keeping all of the air purifiers we carry on the shelves for the past few weeks. They’ve all been selling like hotcakes since this began – or should I say, like toilet paper!
Does the APCO Fresh-Aire UV Air Purifier Work?
First, if air scrubbers didn’t do a great job of cleaning the air – we wouldn’t sell them! In fact, if you’ve read my many other indoor air quality articles, you know I use these products myself. Not only do we run two air scrubbers in Magic Touch Mechanical’s offices, I use purifiers & HEPA filtration at home. The APCO Fresh-Aire UV Air Purifier is one of the better air scrubbers on the market and has been well tested.
Like other air purifiers we recommend, the APCO Fresh-Aire UV utilizes UV-C light not UV-A or UV-B (it matters). In past IAQ (Indoor Air Quality Articles) articles I’ve discussed that only UV-C is proven to kill bacteria and viruses. I’ve also covered the fact that room air purifiers simply don’t work! The APCO Fresh-Aire utilizes your homes ductwork to provide whole home air purification.
Like the Air Scrubber Plus, the Fresh-Aire UV also utilizes Photocatalytic Oxidation to purify your homes air. I discuss this process in previous air scrubber reviews, but bottom-line; the lab test results demonstrate the APCO’s proven results.
Does the APCO Fresh-Aire UV Produce Ozone?
Unlike the Air Scrubber by Aerus, the APCO does not offer an ozone-producing model. In fact, like the Lennox Pure Air, the Fresh-Aire UV promotes the fact that it is “validated ozone free”. This is a benefit for people with asthma and other chronic respiratory diseases. However, ozone generating models are extremely effective at neutralizing odors.
Will an Air Scrubber Kill the Coronavirus?
The moment I heard about the Coronavirus; I knew snake-oil salespeople would be out in full force. Sure enough, the ads are all over Facebook, Twitter & Instagram as we speak. While Magic Touch Mechanical has been installing air quality products for almost ¼ century, the new “experts” are everywhere now. So, let’s be very clear…
We don’t know! No controlled laboratory testing has been done on COVID-19 as of this time!* (See update 1-year later below)*
This technology has been proven to be 99+% effective at killing some very deadly viruses and bacteria but has not been tested against the Covid-19 virus as of today. Per APCO’s website: Fresh-Aire UV systems are tested and validated against bacteria, viruses, mold & fungus. Fresh-Aire UV systems have been tested and achieve up to a *99.999% reduction on microorganisms. The UV systems have also been shown to reduce molds and pathogens that are found within the HVAC system and drain pan that would otherwise be introduced and distributed throughout the envelope of the building.
Previous studies we’ve discussed suggest the only clinical test shown to kill the original SARS virus was concentrated ozone treatment.
However, devices like the APCO Fresh-Aire UV air scrubber should be used to destroy many pathogens we shouldn’t ingest or inhale. A healthy immune system has a much better chance of winning against a harmful virus than an already compromised one!
*UPDATE April 13, 2021: In the year since this article was written, all of the manufacturers mentioned have had many of their products tested for their effectiveness in killing the Covid-19 Virus. As with the others, the results showed they do in fact neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Most have reported similar neutralization results as APCO. Here is the manufacturers statement on their website:
Select Fresh-Aire UV residential and commercial systems achieved 96.5% – 99.99% neutralization of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in 0.5 – 3 seconds on test surfaces in a laboratory setting.
APCO Fresh-Aire UV vs. Lennox Pure Air Purification System
As I mentioned earlier I personally own both air scrubbers and HEPA filtration systems. In my last home, I used the Air Scrubber by Aerus and MERV 11 pleated filters. In my new home, I installed the Lennox Pure Air in both of my Lennox XC25 variable speed air conditioning systems.
It’s not really a fair comparison. The Lennox Pure Air combines both air purification (UVC light) and air filtration (MERV 16 HEPA Filter Media) in one device. The APCO Fresh-Aire UV does not provide air filtration. Both filtration and purification are needed for the best air quality results.
That said, the APCO Fresh-Aire UV is easily installed into most existing air conditioning systems. The Lennox Pure Air on the other hand requires duct modifications and even removal of the furnace in some applications. As I was already replacing both of my HVAC systems, I started with a clean slate so to speak. Technically, I could’ve reinstalled my air scrubbers in my new systems. However, there’s really no better all-in-one indoor air cleaner on the market today than the Lennox air purification system. Not to mention, I’ve wanted to put Lennox XC25 air conditioners in my own home since we installed the 1st one in Arizona – it’s the Rolls Royce of central air conditioners.
Is the APCO Fresh-Aire UV Worth the Money?
Take it from someone with a diagnosed chronic lung disease – a good air purifier is a sound investment in your family’s health. And the APCO is a good air purifier! Prior to installing good purification and filtration in my own home years ago, I got sick more often. I also found myself waking up stuffed-up and coughing a lot. Not to mention I could see the dust floating in the air when the sun was shining through the windows just right. I rarely get sick anymore, in fact its been years since I’ve had the flu or even a cold. And housecleaning is easier as I need to dust a fraction of the time I did before making air quality improvements.
There’s Magic in the Air!
Do you live anywhere within a 35-mile radius of Mesa, Arizona? If so, you can count on Magic Touch Mechanical, a nationally-awarded indoor air quality contractor! Within a few days the only thing in your air will be magic!
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